The goal of all branding efforts, including personal branding, is to set a solid, strategic foundation for all communication. Consistently demonstrating relevance to your prospects – bosses, hiring managers, customers or anyone to whom you are “selling” – in a way that resonates both logically and emotionally, is the path to rising above the competition.
It is critical to get this underlying strategy right, but it’s just the first step. Without faithful execution and the daily grind of getting your name and message out there, even the best-laid strategies will fall short.
With that in mind, I offer the following five tips to leverage your personal brand in your job search.
- Focus on making an emotional connection in emails, calls, Zoom and personal meetings. Your skills and accomplishments are just the ante to get into the game, so establish your unique point-of-difference from a human, emotional perspective, i.e., who you are and how you can change the company for the better.
- Use your core value as the foundation for storytelling. For example, “I’ve always been curious and eager to explore my entire life. I love understanding what makes people tick, and the desire to get beneath the surface has been the key to my success as a marketer.”
- Never be defensive, dishonest or evasive. With a strong personal brand, there is no need to. Stay in control of the conversation by returning to the key talking points (core values, unique point-of-difference, personality, etc.) you established while honing your personal brand.
- Carefully define what you are looking for so that you can interview the interviewer. It’s a two-way street, so in addition to putting your best foot forward, be clear that just as they are looking for the best candidate for their company, it is equally important for you to find the best fit for you.
- Go deep, not broad. You don’t want any job, you want the right job with the right people – those with whom you are a good fit. Defining your personal brand will help you narrow down your target significantly.